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Business - Written by on Monday, April 14, 2008 22:46 - 5 Comments

No pictures? No videos?!? Wow – your CV is SO 1.0.

And maybe this time, it’s okay to be old-school.

In a world where the job application procedure has evolved to where face to face contact has sometimes been replaced with virtual meetings (in worlds such as Second Life), isn’t it also about time that the boring old resume started to evolve as well?  The standard format of: this is who I am, this is where I went to school and this is where I’ve worked may seen a bit passe to many prospects, particularly N-Geners with big aspirations, who find it difficult to put everything in to neat little boxes, including “work experience”, “education”, and “community involvement” to name a few.

Where resume 1.0 has long held exclusive reign, companies such as Visual CV have entered the market to provide more colourful applicant representations (both literally and figuratively).  Allowing users to create electronic documents that can be customized to the users’ needs to include extras such as PDF files of recommendation letters and hyperlinks to employer and institutional information, these CVs provide much more depth than a traditional black and white, one page resume of the day.

In theory, I think Visual CV and its competitors may be on to something – namely that the CV is in need of an overhaul – but in practice, I am not sure if it is more photos/videos and PDFs that will make for a stronger and more useful CV – both from an applicant’s and an employee’s perspective. 

In a world where HR managers are pressed for time and often lack the luxury of spending more than a few minutes on a resume’s initial pass, I am unsure whether the extra time required to create a more colourful CV will provide commensurate reward for either the applicant or the potential employer.  (Not to mention the legal issues that may be associated in certain places with the inclusion of a photo)   

What is required, moreso, may be a fundamental change in some of the questions answered on a standard resume. Potential sections of the successful future CV may include:  What I know. Where I have done it. Who I know and what they know. What I want to create and Who I want to meet and why.

The CV is typically a tool used to gain an applicant an interview, where the ability to shine and truly “colour” one’s experience should come.  Is there the need to fast forward some of the ability to expand on experience onto the resume or is the resume best left as is?  When is “good enough” actually just as it sounds?  Is changing the CV subtraction by addition? What do you think?


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Apr 15, 2008 0:50

I am following Seth Godin’s advice and abandoning the resume. It’s gutsy, but in the few interviews I’ve had so far, the gambit has paid off. Here’s the logic


Apr 15, 2008 8:34

I’d rebut this, but Seth Godin in this blog post has done it way better.

I am rarely outright in disagreement with any view, being all about yin-yang dynamics, but this time, I have to say I am pretty polar in that I think resume 2.0 is the way of the future.

The fundamental error in the way you seem to be looking at it is in thinking about HR managers. They are, have always been, and always will be, professional gatekeepers. You’ll never get a job through them unless it is in a company growing insanely fast where they need all the candidates they can get. In general, you need to reach behind the “HR firewall” to line managers and employees, and Resume 2.0 gets you there.

Dan Herman
Apr 15, 2008 9:21

Fair enough, Venkat. But in a labor market as tight as the current one, with skill sets in both the US and Canada in very high demand, I have to agree with Ian that there isn’t much added value on the Visual CV. Once past the initial screening process perhaps but, IMHO, for first impressions the basics of what, where, and why still take precedence.

Wikinomics » Blog Archive » What is diversity?
May 20, 2008 19:08

[...] (Note, hiring the right mix might mean incorporating some of the tips outlined in the post “No pictures? No videos?!? Wow – your CV is SO 1.0.”) Since companies generally can’t just go out and hire people to fill the diversity quotient, [...]

Teresa Lindsay
Feb 25, 2009 0:41

I used a Video Resume in addition to my regular Resume on http://www.mayomann.com and it got the peoples attention. Isn’t that what Job seekers want? Get the attention from the Human Resource Manager? I have tried Visual CV, but for my taste it caters more to high executives.

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